The restaurant industry today is very competitive, with everyone from high-end restaurants and eateries to fast food places and streetside stands competing for customers and profit. Certain costs, like leases, are fixed operating costs, but other costs can be saved and minimized especially the high-intensity energy use at most restaurants.
The biggest energy expense in a restaurant is its gas bill, and restaurants that follow best practices for energy efficiency enjoys the additional benefit to foodservice professionals, owners, and consumers alike. Some benefits of energy conservation efforts are streamlined operations, lower energy costs, marketing opportunities for an eco-friendly customer base, positive outcomes from environmental friendliness, and improved profitability. A lot of strategies are available to reduce natural gas expenses. Here are the three best ways for restaurants to do that.
Invest in energy-efficient appliances
Cooking and heating water tend to be energy hogs in restaurants, so reducing energy consumption in these two activities is the key to minimize energy use. Also, equipment that is ten years old or older can contribute to a restaurant’s energy use. Investing in appliances results in energy savings, and you can save up to 30%. You will see a reduction in natural gas usage with water heaters, convection ovens, and refrigerators, so investing in energy-efficient replacements for these items is essential.
Another advantage of natural gas appliances is the lack of wasted energy from heat-up time, as the flame can be turned on, and they can be adjusted. Gas also cooks consistently, and it produces less heat when turned off.
Switch boils to natural gas.
The heating costs in a restaurant can be considerable, and making the switch from oil to natural gas can result in energy cost reduction. According to the U.S Department of Energy, a resident converting from oil to natural gas was able to lower their heating energy costs by 60%. This could be applied to restaurants. The initial investment could be high, but the savings over time may make the investment worth it. It is also best to research any incentives that are offered in your area for converting to a gas boiler.
Consider the advantages of alternative gas-fired equipment.
Researchers stated that commercial kitchens consume typically 2 to 2 1/2 times the energy usage per square foot of space compared to the typical office-type business. Because of this energy use, upgrading to energy-efficient appliances is not enough. Other equipment can be run by natural gas instead of electricity, and it usually results in energy savings. The types of equipment to consider include griddles, fryers, and ice machines. An additional benefit to powering natural gas is when electricity flickers or the restaurant experiences an outage; the natural-gas-powered equipment keeps on working.
It is also important to take advantage of competitive suppliers. The deregulation of the energy supply industry is alive in 17 states. This means that competition among the suppliers can be tough, and benefits to the user can be substantial. Aside from being able to shop around for the best and the lowest rates, energy customers can also expect innovative products, amazing service, and help with transitioning to using renewable energy resources.
Same as the way that deregulation of airlines and hotel industries brought a lot of advantages to consumers, the deregulation of the energy supply industry brings energy savings. One key to realizing actual cost savings is to change from a variable to a fixed plan with a new provider. In this way, you can lock in a rate that ensures your peace of mind and the lowest rate that you can find instead of never knowing how much the bill may change every month.
In the past few years, energy costs for restaurants have been very high. With recent changes in deregulation and technology, owners and restaurant professionals can take advantage of opportunities to reduce their energy consumption and to improve their bottom line while providing service to their customers.
Aside from switching to energy-efficient equipment, it is also best to have a local service provider that can help you immediately in case something goes wrong. Commercial refrigeration repair in San Diego can help make sure that your equipment is up and running for continued service.